STUDENTS from Ma-ao Elementary School started learning the Oido de Caburata System of Arnis last July 31, 2010 at the Covered Court in Brgy. Ma-ao, Bago City.   


This development came after the school received a Department of Education (DepEd) circular informing them of the inclusion of Arnis in the Physical Education (PE) in the school curriculum as mandated by Republic Act 9850 “An Act Declaring Arnis as the National Martial Art and Sport of the Philippines,” which was signed into law by then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo last December 11, 2009.   


Teacher II Mary Janet Gubaton-Sayson was designated by the school as its Arnis Coach since her father, Grandmaster Abraham T. Gubaton, is a renowned and well respected Arnisador in Bago. GM Gubaton, now 82, has 64 years experience in Arnis, having first learned Arnis after World War II in 1946. He is the Grand Patriarch of the Oido de Caburata Arnis (ODCA) group.  


The one tasked to teach the students was GM Gubaton’s younger brother, Grandmaster Sabas T. Gubaton, 72, Chief Instructor of the Oido de Caburata Arnis (ODCA) group.  


Oido de Caburata is a unique system of Arnis founded by Grandmaster Antonio “Toñing” Tolosa in 1936 in Minoyan, Murcia to counter the existing prevalent system of Arnis during his time, the Espada y Daga or Methodo format of Arnis. 

Oido is a Spanish word which means “by the ear” and is used in colloquial language to mean “to play without notes,“ as in the case of a piano or a guitar.

In Arnis parlance, Oido denotes the absence of a numbered pattern which is common with most systems of Arnis/Eskrima now taught. 

Caburata is a kind of flexible weapon which was once used by the now defunct Philippine Constabulary (PC).  


After mastering the Espada y Daga method, GM Tolosa practiced the caburata and later translated its movements into the stick, thereby giving birth to Oido de Caburata Arnis. 

What makes Oido de Caburata Arnis unique is that its strikes can go around a defensive block, a characteristic it has borrowed from the Caburata.  


Teacher II Mary Janet Gubaton-Sayson, who teaches Science 4 and Geography, History, and Civics 4, welcomes this development as this will help the youngsters appreciate their cultural heritage as Filipinos. 

The Filipino Martial Arts (FMA), commonly called Arnis/Eskrima, have a rich history and tradition that are only starting to be scholastically studied and documented in the last decade or so.  Knowledge of one’s martial culture will instill pride in the Filipino youth as has Taekwondo, Karate, and Wushu for Korea, Japan, and China.  


Grandmaster Sabas T. Gubaton taught the first four basic techniques of Oido de Caburata techniques to the students. 

He was assisted by Jerry Divinagracia of Brgy. Ilijan on August 14, 2010 as well as two other teaching staff in at least two occasions.(with reports from James U. Sy Jr)